Celtic will not entertain pleas from the Scottish FA to postpone Scottish Premiership fixtures ahead of Scotland’s clash against Israel in March, The Scottish Sun report.
Manager Neil Lennon has provided comment to reporters suggesting that the club are not keen at all on the move.
The national association are looking for Scottish teams to aid Scotland’s quest to reach Euro 2020 by re-scheduling league matches, in an effort to rest players as much as possible for the fixture.
Israel have already agreed to postpone their entire domestic schedule prior to the Hampden fixture on Wednesday 26th March.
Celtic are currently due to play St Johnstone on Saturday 21st March, however that match would be moved to the Sunday if Lennon’s team progress to the last 16 of the Europa League, the second leg of which would be played on 19th March.
The Scottish Sun says that the champions have real concerns about the potential for a fixture pile-up towards the end of the season.
As quoted by the paper, Lennon said: “Our opinion is it wouldn’t suit us. It wouldn’t be ideal for us, put it that way.”
Celtic must do right by Celtic
Although this stance may not be the most popular amongst Scotland supporters, Celtic owe absolutely nothing to the Scotland national team.
Stars such as Ryan Christie and James Forrest could majorly benefit in terms of their readiness for the play-off semi-final, but frankly Celtic have massive ambitions already this season.
Pushing the St Johnstone match further into the season could end up resulting in a major headache, especially if we manage to string together more results in the Europa League.
Imagine it became a game we dropped points in, in part due to fixture fatigue. Celtic fans would be left absolutely fuming with the decision-makers at Celtic Park.
The Scottish Sun reports that this has nothing to do with the recent Ryan Christie saga. Celtic are simply ensuring that the squad is as well prepared for the second half of the season as possible.
For teams that are the size of Celtic, club football always comes ahead of international action, even when there is tangible progress on the line.